Year Company Founded: 1971
Year Logo Introduced: 1971
Logo Designer: Terry Heckler (1971, 1987, 1992), Lippincott and Starbucks Global Creative Team (2011)
Company Founders: Jerry Baldwin, Gordon Bowker, Zev Siegl
In 1971, while in search of inspiration for a logo, the founders of Starbucks stumbled upon a Norse 16th century woodcut which featured the now famous two-tailed mermaid or siren. Terry Heckler was recruited to design the logo for what was then "Starbucks Coffee, Tea, and Spices," which incorporated the bare-chested siren with an intricate crown and tail. Heckler was invited back to update and censor the design in 1987, at the time of the II Giornale and Starbucks merger. In 1992, Heckler returned to revise the logo into the now iconic and further censored version, which features a demure and smiling mermaid with a simple crown and tails. Drawing on Heckler's 1992 design, the latest revisioning occured in 2011. The design team removed the outer circle of the logo, keeping only the mermaid illustration, while changing the black to the trademark Starbucks green. The bold move to rely only on the siren's image reflects the iconic status of the brand, achieved through 40 years of foundation work.